Is conflict RP still possible?

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Architeuthis
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Is conflict RP still possible?

Postby Architeuthis » Mon Jul 28, 2014 12:32 pm

I hear a great deal of cynicism from those who play Warriors, Outlaws, etc. in SL Gor that conflict RP is not feasible or practical to roleplay because, well, for several reasons. Some say that when conflict in RP arises and somebody is downed or killed, sim owners are unwilling to side against their sim residents out of concern that if they don't the person who loses may get frustrated and leave. I also hear that certain people will have a fit, reset their meters and refuse to play out the scene if they lose a fight or are killed. Or sim laws may be written which so heavily favor the sim residents that it would be extremely difficult to play such a conflict out.

It goes much further than this. Full scale wars, occupations of cities, battles which seem like they could be a rich source for story lines often end in a drama filled mess.

What is your take on this? Should sim admins force people to play out the IC actions and story lines (provided no rules are being broken of course) even at the risk of losing people? Or should individuals be allowed to choose the scenes they play out, to the point where they might negatively affect someone else's RP?

Also if you were running a sim and you wanted to have full scale battles how would you manage the egos and keep it from deteriorating into a steaming pile of OOC crap? Or do you not believe its possible and all conflict RP is pointless?
Dyce
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Re: Is conflict RP still possible?

Postby Dyce » Mon Jul 28, 2014 12:50 pm

In Imperial Ar, Theoden and I had the idea of doing large-scale conflict/wars on terrain built up in the sky, similar to a Fields of Hesius (Mars). Theoden went further with the idea of simulating territory control that would not affect the lives of the roleplay-focused residential part of the sims. This way, there was a division between those who wanted large-scale conflict RP versus those wanted storytelling.

Now, as far as personal conflict RP, death and the like, well... some folks aren't willing to sacrifice a story/character they have put so much time into. Instead of suffering death, they choose to roleplay grievous injury. There's really no control that you can have over that in SL. In HTML chat sites, people would get banned from the entire site and all of the chat rooms in it if they didn't obey the kill rules, so there was a little more ability to control things there, but SL isn't globally controlled.

There's just no way to really satisfy everyone in SL. Opinions are like assholes - everyone has one. And the majority of them are different.

Is conflict RP possible? Yes, absolutely, but probably not to everyone's 100% satisfaction. Now, if people are willing to compromise on both sides like adult roleplayers instead of pitching a fit when they don't completely get their way, then they might be in for a pleasant surprise and a good story.
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Architeuthis
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Re: Is conflict RP still possible?

Postby Architeuthis » Mon Jul 28, 2014 12:58 pm

Yes the personal conflict thing I kind of get but do you think death or capture RP loses it's teeth if people can just reset their meters and say "it wasn't me/was just a flesh wound" and go right back to RP?

Should people just suck it up and understand that bad things may happen in a violent sexually charged roleplay environment like Gor? Or is it asking too much that people just go with the RP hand they are dealt with and figure a way out of it? Should they instead just use whatever OOC driven plot device which lets them off the hook and only play out the scenes they want to? And is that fair to their RP partner in the scene as well?
Dyce
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Re: Is conflict RP still possible?

Postby Dyce » Mon Jul 28, 2014 1:39 pm

Well, the issue is that a lot of effort goes into these characters. A lot more than, say... an MMORPG toon, who gets to resurrect/respawn after death. There's really no reason to argue against capture RP. But, death is a touchy subject, especially when so many people in the past have used OOC motivations or metagaming to kill a person's character, which waters down the gravity and seriousness of the situation. Not everyone can be trusted to be a quality roleplayer. Some are just assholes that will use kill rules to harass someone over and over - so, what do you do about it then? Even if the gameplay rules are being followed, the motivations are skewed, and putting rules on motivations is something I'm sure everyone wants to avoid.

So, in this sense, it's more than one-sided meter-resetting or someone saying they just won't accept the death. To look at only the victim's side of things and their reactions in this argument is to blind ourselves to the multitude of other possible factors that need to be calculated into the situation.

In essence, we are writing interactive books and we all want to be the heroes of our own stories. And we all have the right to be when it comes to roleplay. That's a core rule written into every RPG tabletop book on the first few pages. "The players are the heroes."

The issue with roleplaying Gor and death in Gor is that death is final. There's no magical or supernatural way to bring people back, unless you want to clone them like they do in the Nest, which opens a whole other can of worms that sparks another debate over what kind of tech is accepted, etc.

However, to finally answer your question - yes, it does water it down and it renders the caste of Assassins pointless and useless when it comes to player interaction. Instead of going somewhere and killing someone and having that kill honored, the Assassin more or less has to capture the person, hope that person honors the capture, drag them somewhere that they cannot debate the kill rules, kill them, hope the person honors the kill, and hope that people don't metagame finding who did the kill, etc, and retaliating. That's a lot riding on hope of the other player's honor, but it's also a lot riding on the quality of the roleplay when looking at it from the victim's point of view.

And then there's the old debate of whether or not the meter should come into play with such kinds of stories since a quality roleplayer doesn't necessary have the machine power or the click-skills to perform their duty as well as some hardcore gamer with a great machine with less-than-desirable roleplay skills.

It's just too much to factor in for a global decision.
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Architeuthis
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Re: Is conflict RP still possible?

Postby Architeuthis » Mon Jul 28, 2014 2:05 pm

I'm speaking on more than just the Caste of Assassins. I am generalizing to include really anyone who kills someone in RP. To me a Warrior would be able to kill much easier than an Assassin or Outlaw would. And I do get that our characters are very personal and all that but without some kind of acquiescence on the part of the players to acknowledge the parts of RP they don't like, such as being killed/capped/et al, the rest of RP loses meaning. Same would be true for someone who just randomly kills people for the lulz but I think that should be handled by an admin.
Dyce
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Re: Is conflict RP still possible?

Postby Dyce » Mon Jul 28, 2014 2:15 pm

Architeuthis wrote:Same would be true for someone who just randomly kills people for the lulz but I think that should be handled by an admin.


And that's the cardinal issue. Objectively, it shouldn't matter the motivation as long as the gameplay rules are followed. Are we going to pass judgment on rules or are we going to pass judgment on someone's motivations? That leads to the exact issues that you're talking about: An admin doesn't like why someone came to kill a resident and rules it invalid, whether the killer followed the rules or not.

Which is why I said there's simply too much to take in to make a global decision about it. Either we follow the rules objectively, regardless of lulz and assholes, or we don't and let people choose on their own whether they accept the kill or not.
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Anarch Allegiere
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Re: Is conflict RP still possible?

Postby Anarch Allegiere » Mon Jul 28, 2014 2:33 pm

Although killing RP can add an interesting dynamic to a sim instead of it turning stale and characters getting rusted stuck into their role of Ubar, Magistrate, or any other political role permanently. I'd rather just avoid it by now, unless someone is really taking the piss.

It's not killing that is a problem, it's just overall RPing anything in the form off:
- a fight (verbal or physical), or
- getting sexual with a female character of someone's interest
- slapping someone's slave or woman
- arresting someone for <insert reason>
- a meter fight or a raid
- etc.

and the average BtB sim will already explode with drama and people being majorly upset. This subject has been argued to death by me for many years now, and although I've grown more accustomed and accepting of people's 'varied' RP tastes and preferences, I don't think it's going to change anytime soon (it's only become worse overall) and I generally avoid RPing in or with most (average) BtB sims because of it.
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Architeuthis
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Re: Is conflict RP still possible?

Postby Architeuthis » Mon Jul 28, 2014 2:38 pm

I guess that's the hammer hitting the nail so to speak. Either you try to make everyone play by the same rules, you hope that people can handle this type of RP, or you just say forget it and don't bother. I am hopeful I guess. I like to think that the SL Gor community has matured over the years and we don't need silly things like special rules for death, a whole set of laws just for Assassins, etc. One can always hope. :)
Dyce
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Re: Is conflict RP still possible?

Postby Dyce » Mon Jul 28, 2014 2:53 pm

Anarch Allegiere wrote:Although killing RP can add an interesting dynamic to a sim instead of it turning stale and characters getting rusted stuck into their role of Ubar, Magistrate, or any other political role permanently. I'd rather just avoid it by now, unless someone is really taking the piss.


I learned my lessons after the second Imperial Ar. I actually agree with you when it comes to things getting rusted stuck or how things get boring or people get irritated after a point with all the IM'ing, etc. that goes on as a sim leader.

It's why I refuse to open another city again. That, and I don't think cities can actually be portrayed correctly in SL. Too many critical roles that never get filled. The cosmopolitan society always lacks.

The political arena could be handled if there were actual elections for administrators, impeachments, etc. I get the whole "I wanna be perma-Ubar!" I really do. But, I learned that it just serves to ruin a lot.
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Architeuthis
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Re: Is conflict RP still possible?

Postby Architeuthis » Mon Jul 28, 2014 3:58 pm

So what's the verdict? Don't bother?

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